Team Canada wins 2018 Hlinka Gretzky Cup

Hockey Canada (Wikimedia Commons)

Team Canada has won their 22nd international ice hockey tournament (now known as the Hlinka Gretzky Cup). On Saturday, in the gold medal game from Rogers Place in Edmonton, Canada defeated Sweden 6-2.

Alexis Lafreniere of Saint-Eustache, Quebec led Team Canada in scoring with three points. He had two goals and one assist. Lafreniere’s first goal, (which turned out to be the game winning goal) was of a highlight reel variety as he stickhandled the puck from one end of the arena to the other before beating Swedish goaltender Hugo Alnefelt.

Two other Canadian players had a multi-point game. Sasha Mutala of Vancouver, British Columbia had two goals and Dylan Cozens of Whitehorse, Yukon had two assists. The other two Canadians who notched a goal were Kirby Dach of Fort Saskatchewan, Alberta and Josh Williams of Langley, British Columbia.

The Canadian squad won despite getting off to a rough start. Sweden jumped into a quick 2-0 lead by the 11:33 mark of the first period before Canada scored six unanswered goals.

This was the third time in the history of the tournament that Canada played Sweden in the gold medal game. In 2011 in Breclav, Czech Republic, Canada beat Sweden 4-1 and in 2015 in Breclav, Czech Republic, Canada beat Sweden 7-3. In 2011, Canada was led in points in the gold medal game by Brendan Gaunce of Markham, Ontario (one goal and one assist for two points) and in 2015, Canada was led in points in the gold medal game by Columbus Blue Jackets forward Pierre-Luc Dubois of Sainte-Agathe-des-Monts, Quebec, who had two goals and one assist for three points.

In the bronze medal game at the 2018 tournament in Edmonton, Russia won the bronze medal. They defeated the United States 5-4 for third place.

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